Maria arrived in Canada in 2002 with her family. They lived in Montreal for four years, where she studied Bachelors of Psychology at Concordia University. She graduated in 2005. “I wanted to be a lawyer, but it was expensive, so I went to psychology.”
In 2004, while in school, she worked with an immigration consultant firm and fell in love with immigration work.
In 2006, Maria moved to Calgary and worked as a paralegal with a law firm. During that time, she studied for her immigration consulting license. She then partnered with a recruitment company where she worked for seven years.
Ever since she moved to Canada, she’s always tried to find ways to help her fellow Kababayans. “It’s the reason I took psychology,” said Maria, “to be able to help.”
In 2015, she opened her firm – Maria De Luna Immigration Services Inc., also known as MDL Immigration services. “It’s about the feeling of contentment when you’re able to help others with their problems and complications,” says Maria. “It’s a great feeling to be able to help others.”
Her firm has seen tremendous success over the past year. “I now have nine employees, and we have an office in downtown Calgary.”
She recently started MDL team events, and authored a book: Ala – Eh?! Ang Buhay Canadian.
On starting her own business, “It was scary at first,” said Maria. “There was overhead cost. Then the company began to grow. It’s all about serving our clients.”
Aside from being a mom and a business owner, Maria is also actively involved in the community as a member of TFCC – The Filipino Champions of Canada. She gave an inspirational speech early this year at one of TFCC’s events, FCT – Filipino Champions Talk. “If it helps the community become closer, I’m there to help out.”
Maria’s message to Filipinos is “Always dream! There will always be a pathway to get to your dream. Sometimes there are obstacles, but always hang on to your dream.”